Are you ready to paddle up and play the next generation of Pong? Then prepare to enter Pong World.

Back in February, Atari, the company behind Pong, launched the Pong Indie Developer Challenge. An open call for independent developers to pitch their re-imaginings of the classic arcade video game, the Pong Indie Developer Challenge concluded last summer with the announcement of three winners.

The winners are: Eppy Games’ Fong in third place, Madruse’s Pong Tournament in second place, and zGames’ Pong World in first place.

Having received top honors, Pong World gets to be the first Pong title to be officially launched by Atari on iOS. And it’s now live in the App Store.

Of course, Pong World wouldn’t be a Pong title if it weren’t essentially a tennis sports game. But Pong World does add a myriad of enhancements and expansions to its classic inspiration.

In fact, Pong World has so many enhancements and expansions that it appears to, well, inhabit a world that is entirely its own — far removed from the plain two-dimensional world of the original.

If you can’t see the video embedded above, please click here.

Pong World boasts the following key features:

  • Wield five different paddles to add your personal touch, with more to unlock, like Shaggy, Chompers and Sir Bouncelot
  • Pack your paddle around the world in four levels including the Jungle, Boulevard, Cathedral, and the Moon
  • Multiple gameplay modes Classic, Blitz and Hotseat offer a whole new experience to classic PONG gameplay
  • Slice through progressing difficulty levels as players hone their touchscreen talents
  • Unlock in-game achievements and compare high scores with friends on the leaderboards

Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad, Pong World is available now in the App Store for free.

The App Store is already home to plenty of unofficial Pong-inspired games, as evidenced by our Pong AppGuide. But what do you think of this first official Pong title? I for one think that I and Pong will definitely get along.